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Retail Sales Decrease 0.3 Percent in April

Retail Sales Decrease 0.3 Percent in April

Seasonally adjusted total retail sales decreased 0.3 percent in April 2004, compared with March 2004, according to Statistics New Zealand. This follows an increase of 2.1 percent in March 2004 and a decrease of 1.7 percent in February 2004. Excluding the motor vehicle related industries, seasonally adjusted sales decreased 0.8 percent in April 2004, compared with the previous month.

Twelve of the 24 retail industries recorded increases in seasonally adjusted sales in April 2004, compared with March 2004. The largest dollar value increase occurred in automotive fuel retailing (up $21 million). The largest decreases occurred in supermarket and grocery stores (down $38 million) and motor vehicle retailing (down $12 million). Two industries, personal and household goods hiring, and footwear, recorded relatively unchanged sales this month.

The retail sales trend for the Total North Island increased 0.6 percent in April 2004, compared with March 2004. Over the same period, the retail sales trend for the total South Island increased 0.7 percent.

Total actual retail sales for April 2004 were $4,415 million, 9.3 percent higher than in April 2003.

Ian Ewing

Acting Government Statistician

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